Sportsmen's Clubs Sue To Force Issue Of Bear-hunt Licenses

bobpbx

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An "emergency" they say;

SPORTSMEN'S CLUBS SUE TO FORCE ISSUE OF BEAR-HUNT LICENSES

Date: 041026
From: http://www.pressofatlanticcity.com/

By David Benson, The Press of Atlantic City, October 23

New Jersey hunters may still get bear-hunting permits this year if
state and national sportsmen's clubs are successful in a quest for
what is known as emergency relief, a spokesman for a national club
said Friday.

"We have asked the court to set a hearing date because the hunt
approaches quickly," said Rob Sexton, a spokesman for the U.S.
Sportsmen's Alliance Foundation.

The foundation, along with the New Jersey Federation of Sportsmen's
Clubs, filed a suit in the Appellate Division of state Superior Court
in Trenton on Oct. 14 seeking to force the state Department of
Environmental Protection to honor more than 3,000 applications for
2004 bear-hunting permits.

DEP Commissioners Bradley M. Campbell has said repeatedly that no
bear-hunting permits will be issued this year, despite a Dec. 6-11
bear-hunting season approved by the state Fish and Game Council.

Campbell apparently blocked the December bear hunt by instructing the
state Division of Fish and Wildlife not to issue applications for the
permits this year.

The state Fish and Game Council, however, made an application
available to the state sportsmen's club, which was copied and
distributed to licensed fish-and-game agents statewide.

More than 3,000 of the copied applications have been submitted to the
Division of Fish and Wildlife.

Campbell has described the applications as unauthorized, and
reiterated his opposition to a hunt this year, calling for different
options - including sterilization - to control the state's bear
population.

On Friday, both the state and national sportsmen's clubs filed a
motion asking Superior Court Judge Clarkson Fischer Jr. to set
hearings quickly, before the question of a legal bear hunt would be
rendered moot.

"This is the same thing we went through last year," said Larry
Lehmann, president of the state sportsmen's club.

Lehmann said the clubs fought several lawsuits against the DEP last
year to win the right to hunt bear in New Jersey for the first time in
33 years.

"We hope to hear something Tuesday," Lehmann said. "But it's only a
hope."

* * *

To email David Benson at The Press: DBenson@pressofac.com; phone:
(609) 272-7206

Copyright, 2004, South Jersey Publishing Company
 

Bobbleton

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Probably the only thing about this that annoys me more than the fact that the "Sportsmen's Club" is suing the state for the right to kill bears . . . is that there's a good possibility they'll win. This is why environmental law is so had to enforce. If NJ's Department of Environmental Protection . . . the GOVERNMENT branch that ALLOWS hunting to take place at all can have its authority undermined by the court system in reaction to a bunch of pissed-off bloodthirsty hunters . . what hope is there really of protecting any valuable natural resource?? I understand there are lots of hunters in Jersey and that their money is what makes conservation on the state level (which seems to be the only level . . ) possible. But how is it even possible to undermine Cambell with a simple suit like this?? Its like the "national theives guild" winning a case to legalize grand theft auto. This just boggles my mind. I'm sorry. If the government branch in charge is incapable of doing its job on such a small scale, I may as well giving up on the planet now. This isn't even fighting serious major-league players . . . its not big business --- its a bunch of guys in flannel hats and camo jackets.

If the dep says no, that SHOULD be the final word. period. The hunters of the state all crying out in unison "its not FAIR!!" SHOULD not hold any legal water. but it did last year. it probably will again. there are alot of things that SHOULD not be the way they really are . ..

-Bob
 

Ben Ruset

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Yup, it's a terrible thing being able to challenge the draconian powers of your government in court.

It's MUCH better to let the Government arbitrarily do whatever it wants, whether it is in the public interest or not. I mean, NJ government is so honorable and free from corruption, why would anybody NOT trust it.

Oh, and I'd love to know when the NJ DEP is going to build those ORV parks they promised:

The Department's Division of Natural and Historic Resources shall work to develop appropriate recreational areas for lawful ORV users that meet the requirements of the preceding paragraph, with the goal of having two new such facilities in operation by 2005.
Hmm, there hasn't even been sites selected yet. But the law that they passed impounding even properly registered & insured ORV's is certainly being enforced. And those $1000 fines sure go a long way towards paying his salary.

I'm not necessarily for the hunting of black bear, IF in fact the population is lower than what the Fish & Wildlife people think it is. But wasn't it not so long ago that they wanted to transplant bears from North Jersey into the Pine Barrens because there were too many of them up north?
 

Bobbleton

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Perhaps i'm not being sympathetic enough to the hunters of new jersey. I'm sure there are scores of them (about 3000 or so) whose lives will be empty and meaningless without the legal freedom to shoot black bears in NJ for ten days in december. There are also likely a great number of them whose families will starve without the nutritious bear meat they were counting on for food.
I'm all for our right to challenge the government's executive decisions in court . . . but what corruption-based gains do the officials at dep attain by not allowing the hunt?? Seems they have everything to lose in public popularity and in permit fees by banning the bear hunt.

and public interest is certainly important . . . since we ARE new jersey . . . but last i was informed on a particular issue (just for example) the public interest was all about keeping gasoline as our main fuel source and bigger less efficient vehicles are all the rage. investing in solar and hydrogen technology is apparantly too expensive. in ten years when gas is 10 bucks a gallon i'm somewhat inclined to believe the public may not think they were so right with that first "declaration of interest".

And as far as regulating the population . . . that's nonsense. the ecological principle of carrying capacity will regulate if nothing else will. and there can only be so many large territorial mammals in one compact area at a time (why they're migrating). its always one or the other . . . we're either protecting a species so it can flourish or killing it so the numbers will drop. the only reason bears are expanding at all is because we've been not screwing with them for 33 years. why can't we just leave something the hell alone? if they have the ability to grow that means the ecosystem can handle them (and very likely depends on them for a number of different reasons).

i'm certainly not the biggest fan of unquestioningly trusting government decisions . . . but the idea of suing the state because a group of people deem their fun as more important than the health of a recovering species . . . just seems childish and stupid to me. i understand bears cause problems and will cause more problems as their numbers grow. but if they weren't big and smart and fun to shoot, its pretty unlikely all these concerned citizens would be outraged at their inability to hunt them. if chipmunks all of a sudden were causing tens of thousands in property damage a year, i find it hard to believe there'd be a mad dash for hunting permits to "thin the herd" for the public's best interests. i'd find it hard to believe that anyone but the property owners would give a crap.

-Bob
 

Ben Ruset

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Sure - for 10 days these people won't be able to hunt. Big deal for you - you're not a hunter. (Nor am I.) However I don't see it as being a problem with hunting per-se.

I have a problem with Campbell and his "well, I don't like it so I am going to block it" mentality. He's not blocking the hunt for humane reasons. He's not blocking it because of underpopulation.

Campbell steadfastly opposes a second hunt, saying that although the bear population could support it, he does not want to rely on hunting as the sole approach to managing the bears.

Campbell favors greater use of awareness programs for those residents living near bears, and a contraception program that is still under development. Some tests of the program are expected to begin Oct. 19 at Six Flags Great Adventure in Jackson.
http://www.app.com/app/story/0,21625,1076680,00.html

In his statement, he claims that the hunt will be too expensive for the F&W to handle, as well as requiring various other agencies to spend money to provide security for the hunters & protesters, media and PR, etc.

Okay - so this is a money thing. But running pilot programs testing bear contraception and spending up to $20,000 on a survey to find out how people feel about bears is going to save money?

I really wonder if Campbell gets a kickback from the company that provides the chemicals and testing equipment for bear contraception. I don't trust him enough to be honest about it.

I'll say it again. I don't like hunting. I would never do it. However I do respect the fact that people enjoy it, and that it can be used as a tool to keep animal populations in check. (Could you imagine the deer population if they stopped hunting for one year?)
 

Ben Ruset

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I'll also say it now to be fair that perhaps my intense dislike for the NJDEP and Commissioner Campbell clouds my judgement in this matter.

I just really, REALLY don't like or trust the man or the department.
 

wis bang

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Pennsylvania has expanded it's bear hunt in the pocono counties where population vrs bear is the most severe. The allow bear licensed hunters to also take bear during the first week of the deer hunt. I'm 50 and I've been hunting there since I was 11 and although I have seen bear in the woods; I never see them during deer hunting, thousands of deer hunters flood the area which is enough to scare them off.

Last year they largest bear shot in the state was at a garbage dump in Stroud Township, close to my place but amore populated area. I'm sure those persons would not appreciate giving that bear birth control & turning it loose...

DEP should be seperate from Fish & Game; let them hug all the trees they need & let the hunting proceede under the direction of the people we pay to manage out wildlife...the very people Campbell overode!
 

wis bang

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bruset said:
I just got back from the (north) Poconos. We were in Honesdale, PA. Great country up there.
We're on State forest land just N of Marshalls Creek If you drove up Rt 402, you went near. It is great country w/ it's own set of geographic oddities but boulder fields & potholes don't compare to Orchids, etc. like you see in the pines. It's been fun watching the turkeys & now bear spread from up there to re-populate NJ...
 

Lorun

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Bruset - You do not like hunting but defended it better than I ever could, and I have been hunting all my life. I hunt and I am not bloodthirsty. I have more respect for all life and the people I hunt with have more respect for all life compared to most non hunters I have met. I have mixed feelings about a bear hunt because they are truly magnificent animals.
I think contraceptives are the dumbest idea of all. How can they propose contraceptives but believe the population cannot support a hunt?
Life and death will always be tied together.

Nature’s way - Bear is born, lives happy for two to five years and then is killed at the hands of a hunter.

Confused anti hunter way - Bear never born and never killed. Momma bear was on the pill. Momma bear will give her life defending cubs, but cubs never were born because anti-hunter wanted to save her from hunters.
 

Bobbleton

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I am not anti-hunting. I may not personally enjoy the idea of extinguishing life as a means of entertainment, but I do not believe hunting is without its benefits or that hunters are fundamentally bloodthirsty. What I DO believe is that hunters (and they are DEFINATLY not alone in this) seem to think they OWN nature. The mentality of nature existing solely to serve our personal agendas infuriates me.

Lorun said:
Nature’s way - Bear is born, lives happy for two to five years and then is killed at the hands of a hunter.
that is not nature's way. dying of starvation . . a cold winter . . another predator . . . disease . . . all ugly terrible "inhumane" ways for a creature to die. Not pretty . . nature's way. I'm not crying over the "poor bears being hurt by the mean hunters". I'm fuming over the insolent, self-righteous attitudes of those who think bears are just there to shoot.

People wanting to hunt bear is fine. If it serves a purpose, and it makes some people happy . . . all the better. I certainly have no problem with that.
People who believe hunting bear is their RIGHT. Those who would hunt for personal entertainment--devoid of ecological consideration--THAT is what pisses me off. Those who--if given complete freedom--would shoot and shoot till there were none left and still be "righteous" because its their RIGHT . . . because forests and rivers and animals live and die only to be instruments to meet our deepest needs or our most shallow whims . . . THAT is what pisses me off.

Ensuring the survival and well being of yourself and your family--that's a right. Freedom--that's a right. Using natural resources (that NOBODY owns but that EVERYONE has stake in) to satisfy your own wants disregarding consequenses or the opinions of others is NOT.

When research proves that hunting is the most effective method for reducing bear/human conflicts---fire away. Thus far I have neither seen nor heard any supporting evidence. The only thing hunting is PROVEN to do is (duh) reduce the population size. Conflicts will arise despite the number of bears . . . the state isn't a "safer place" for having harvested several hundred bear --good bears and "problem bears" alike . . plucked out indescriminatly by hunters-- once a year. This isn't an issue of public safety or property damage, and i could be generalizing, but i don't think the outrage from the hunting community stems from concern for public well-being or "protection" from these animals. It seems to be much simpler (and again perhaps i'm totally wrong) in stemming from a bunch of people having gotten hyped up on the idea of an exciting hunt and being pissed when told they weren't allowed do it.

When they find out that hunting is our best means of conflict control (not population control) please give me the update. Shut me up. We'll all be alot more satisfied.

-Bob
 

RednekF350

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Hunting is much more than a tool for population control.
I've been a hunter for 37 of my 47 years and tagged along with my father a few years before I could legally carry a gun.
I know that I have a deeper respect and understanding of the natural world than quite a few of the antis and ambivalents I have met.
I don't "extinguish" life for entertainment as you put it Bob.
When I take an animal's life, be it a squirrel, a deer or a duck, I appreciate everything that God has put on this earth for our sustenance.
As for Campbell, he has been wasting my oxygen for too long and needs to go.
I agree with Ben too, Campbell has done nothing about establishing ATV areas as he "mandated" a few years ago.I guess fining the owners is more lucrative.
He is an appointed political yoyo that should not be in charge of our hunting resources.
I have to say I do like the bear contraceptive idea. As long as it involves condoms and Campbell gets to do the roll-on!
 

bobpbx

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Bobbleton said:
I'm not crying over the "poor bears being hurt by the mean hunters". I'm fuming over the insolent, self-righteous attitudes of those who think bears are just there to shoot.

Those who--if given complete freedom--would shoot and shoot till there were none left and still be "righteous" because its their RIGHT . . . because forests and rivers and animals live and die only to be instruments to meet our deepest needs or our most shallow whims . . . THAT is what pisses me off.

This isn't an issue of public safety or property damage, and i could be generalizing, but i don't think the outrage from the hunting community stems from concern for public well-being or "protection" from these animals. It seems to be much simpler (and again perhaps i'm totally wrong) in stemming from a bunch of people having gotten hyped up on the idea of an exciting hunt and being pissed when told they weren't allowed do it.

-Bob
I agree Bob, and these points are the essence of the argument. There also has been a lot of good work by Bradley Campbell in regards to the environment, so I think getting personal about him or attacking his credentials is wrong and serves little purpose. He is in charge, and that is that. If they want bear this year, let 'em go to New York and Pennsylvania.
 

Ben Ruset

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Bobbleton said:
I certainly have no problem with that.
People who believe hunting bear is their RIGHT. Those who would hunt for personal entertainment--devoid of ecological consideration--THAT is what pisses me off. Those who--if given complete freedom--would shoot and shoot till there were none left and still be "righteous" because its their RIGHT
I don't think that people are thinking that it's their "right" to hunt whatever and whenever. What happened is that the F&W Department issued the permits - gave permission to the hunt - and along comes Brad Campbell and shuts it down for stupid reasons (financial, not ecological.)

Maybe the "hard core" hunting types might see it as their "right" but I am talking about the mainstream majority.
 

wis bang

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bruset said:
I don't think that people are thinking that it's their "right" to hunt whatever and whenever. What happened is that the F&W Department issued the permits - gave permission to the hunt - and along comes Brad Campbell and shuts it down for stupid reasons (financial, not ecological.)

Maybe the "hard core" hunting types might see it as their "right" but I am talking about the mainstream majority.
The hunting community follows the agenda published by F & W and followed the mandated process. They are NOT the villian here!

I grew up in a family with a strong hunting tradition. My participation is limited by commitments to my family & job and I see my week of deer hunting as 'my' vacation. No wife, No Kids, No Job, No Phone [OK< it is shut off], and NO JOB. Plus it is a chance to spend 7 days in the woods and I get to bring a rifle along...

I also understand the act that alot of people did not 'grow up' with hunting. I try to follow my persuit of the sport without offending anyone. It is just hard not to speak out when someone in a place of power let's his personal feelings interrupt a lawful process.

The majority of the trees that are left to hug surrvived the latter 2/3rds of the twentith century because the lands and species promoted by the hunting communities commitment to their sport and the dollars generated from the federal excise taxes on hunting and fishing items as well as the state funds from the purchase of licenses. Like it or not; the hunting community started it and paid for it. Now "They" get to utilize what "We" saved, for free, and they get to bad mouth the hunters too. It's time to accept that the hunting community stepped up to the plate and continue to spend money on conserving this land.
 

RednekF350

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Amen Wisbang.
Many huggers and antis have probably never heard of the Pittman-Robertson Act adopted in 1937.
It is an 11% federal tax that we as sportsmen pay that is built into the cost of every gun, every box of ammunition and every bow that is sold in this country! (And people complain about a 6% sales tax.)
The unfathomable dollars generated by the Act since 1937 have funded more conservation projects and land acquisuitions then any other federal or state program.
To get back on topic, I think we as sportsmen have a pretty good record of proving we know how to manage wildlife and other natural resources on our own without people like Brad Boy sticking his bald head where it doesn't belong.
Scott
 

bobpbx

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wis bang said:
The majority of the trees that are left to hug surrvived the latter 2/3rds of the twentith century because the lands and species promoted by the hunting communities commitment to their sport and the dollars generated from the federal excise taxes on hunting and fishing items as well as the state funds from the purchase of licenses. Like it or not; the hunting community started it and paid for it. Now "They" get to utilize what "We" saved, for free, and they get to bad mouth the hunters too. It's time to accept that the hunting community stepped up to the plate and continue to spend money on conserving this land.
I don't know Wiz, some of your claims seem a "leeetle far fetched" :rolleyes:

Now, why do you think the State purchased the Wharton Tract? You think it was so we could hunt on that thar piece of land?
 

RednekF350

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Actually hunting was always a part of the Wharton tract history and played a part in the push by the state to purchase the land.
Back when the Wharton family controlled it, they issued hunting permits to anyone who wanted to hunt there.
I have some old timer friends that used to get the permits and they all kick themselves for throwing them away. Probably worth a fortune on ebay.
Hunters aren't going away any time soon.
But I wish Brad Boy would.
Scott